HomeNewsBriefPeru Traffickers Resisting Coca Eradication: Bolivia
BRIEF

Peru Traffickers Resisting Coca Eradication: Bolivia

BOLIVIA / 31 MAY 2013 BY ELYSSA PACHICO EN

A Bolivian government official says that a recent incident involving coca growers attacking the security forces was spurred by Peruvian drug traffickers present in the region, a plausible theory, although the coca growers could have also acted on their own. 

As EFE reports, the vice minister of narcotics affairs, Felipe Caceres, told media that a joint task force made up of police and military faced resistance when they ventured into a region 450 kilometers north of La Paz, in order to destroy coca crops.

The task force entered the region, Apolo, between May 25 and 26, and were blocked by some 30 people, many of them coca growers, the minister said. The protesters attacked the security forces with stones and sticks, while the agents responded with tear gas. Only one coca grower was injured during the clash. 

Caceres said that he had intelligence showing that Peruvian drug traffickers active in the region had "instigated" the conflict.

He warned that the government would apply an "iron fist" in eradicating illegal coca crops from Apolo.

InSight Crime Analysis

There is substantial evidence showing that Peruvian drug trafficking organizations have an established presence in Bolivia. An anonymous drug trafficker interviewed recently by a Peruvian newspaper even commented that Bolivia is viewed as an "ideal place" to sell cocaine shipments. Additionally, police have said that trafficking organizations moving cocaine between Bolivia and Brazil frequently deal with Peruvian product.

Still, given the long history of conflict between Bolivia's coca growers and government eradication teams, it is not as though the coca growers would need a foreign group of drug traffickers to "instigate" their protests, as Caceres said. It is possible that by blaming Peruvians for the riot, Caceres was attempting in part to deflect the blame. 

Other foreign drug trafficking organizations in Bolivia include the Colombians, who are known for running large-scale cocaine laboratories inside the country

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Tags

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

BOLIVIA / 20 OCT 2014

For the second time in less than a week, a group of Bolivians living in slave-like conditions has been rescued…

COCA / 17 MAR 2017

New information on coca crops by Peru's top drug officials suggest that cultivations may be growing for the first time…

COCAINE / 7 JUN 2017

A recent cocaine seizure in Peru has shown that organized crime groups have begun to follow new drug routes and…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Venezuela El Dorado Investigation Makes Headlines

3 DEC 2021

InSight Crime's investigation into the trafficking of illegal gold in Venezuela's Amazon region generated impact on both social media and in the press. Besides being republished and mentioned by several…

THE ORGANIZATION

Gender and Investigative Techniques Focus of Workshops

26 NOV 2021

On November 23-24, InSight Crime conducted a workshop called “How to Cover Organized Crime: Investigation Techniques and A Focus on Gender.” The session convened reporters and investigators from a dozen…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Names Two New Board Members

19 NOV 2021

In recent weeks, InSight Crime added two new members to its board. Joy Olson is the former executive director of the Washington Office on Latin America…

THE ORGANIZATION

Senate Commission in Paraguay Cites InSight Crime

12 NOV 2021

InSight Crime’s reporting and investigations often reach the desks of diplomats, security officials and politicians. The latest example occurred in late October during a commission of Paraguay's Senate that tackled…

THE ORGANIZATION

Backing Investigative Journalism Around the Globe

5 NOV 2021

InSight Crime was a proud supporter of this year's Global Investigative Journalism Conference, which took place November 1 through November 5 and convened nearly 2,000 journalists…